Day one at the NZ Secondary School National Ki o Rahi Tournament 2018 is done and dusted, we look at how they day went and what that means for Day 2 - Finals!
24 teams overall entered the tournament, after one withdrawing we were left with 23 teams split over 4 pools as follows:
POOL A - Nga Puna o Waiorea, Rotorua Boys and Girls, Tolaga Bay Area School (Uawa), Te Kura Maori o Nga Tapuwae, Te Kuiti High School
Pool A finished with National Champions Nga Tapuwae on top winning 4 out of 4 games, they had some tight encounters including close games against Waiorea, Te Kuiti and Rotorua Boys and Girls before pulling away towards the end of the matches. These tight encounters might serve them well come day 2 however they will need to score more points in order to have the same success as last year, of all the teams that placed 1st in their pool they scored the least number of points on Day 1.
Rotorua Boys and Girls finished 2nd in Pool A and move in to the top 8 for the very first time after only their second appearance at Nationals. Rotorua would have gained confidence in their game against Nga Tapuwae where they nearly upset the 2017 Champs. Rotorua have some solid attack but can they defend points come Day 2, that will be the main area of focus if they wish to break into the top 4. They're only one win away from that!
POOL B - Te Wharekura o Rakaumangamanga, Karamu High, Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Kaikohe, Hastings Boys & Hukarere Maori Girls, Te Kura o Kokohuia, Kuratai
Rakaumanga walked through this pool with dominance racking up over 200 points for and less than 50 points against, they move on to Day 2 unbeaten and will hope that not having been tested hard on Day 1 doesn't sting them.
Hastings Boys and Hukarere Maori Girls finished 2nd in Pool B only losing one to Rakaumanga, they too put some big scores on teams although it is alarming that they had 46 points put on them by Rakaumanga and 41 points by Kuratai.
POOL C - Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Tupoho, Turanga Wahine Turanga Tane, Cullinane College, Lytton High School, Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Kawakawa mai Tawhiti, Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Nga Uri a Maui
Pool C saw Lytton High School coming out on top after an impressive Day 1, they look to be the goods in 2018 with a strong all around game including a good pressure defence, some nice jump shooting and some powerful running. Lytton beat teams comfortably even upsetting old foes TWTT in their game.
TWTT (Turanga Wahine Turanga Tane) also beat teams comfortably in their pool, they only lost the one game to Lytton and that was only a 13 - 10 loss. Their was a sin binning of one of their players in that game and that may have cost them the W, this makes their very first game tomorrow a tough one, having to play winners of Pool B, Rakaumangamanga.
POOL D - Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Te Waiu o Ngati Porou, Mana College, Palmerston Boys and Girls, Te Wharekura o Taumarere, Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Horouta Wananga, Linwood College
Pool D was the only pool with teams all being beaten at least once. Horouta Wananga and Mana College both lost one, with Horouta beating Mana and Horouta losing to new comers Linwood College from Christchurch. This meant that both teams finished on 8 points but the first place spot went to Horouta due to a better For and Against.
What does this mean for Day 2?
Championship Quarter Finals
Nga Tapuwae v Mana College
Rakaumanga v TWTT
Lytton v Hastings Boys/Hukarere Girls
Horouta Wananga v Rotorua Boys/Girls
Plate Quarter Finals
Waiorea v Linwood
Karamu v Cullinane
Kawakawa mai Tawhiti v Kuratai
Te Waiu v UAWA
Bowl Quarter Finals
Te Kuiti v Taumarere
Kokohuia v Nga Uri a Maui
Tupoho v Kaikohe
Palmerston Boys/Girls v BYE
Good luck to all teams on Day 2!